The Telegraph
Monday , June 17 , 2013
 
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RTE push for private schools

Ranchi, June 16: A host of private schools functioning in the city and its surroundings, without the necessary approval or recognition from the state, have now been given a four-day deadline — beginning today — to submit applications for the mandatory affiliation process.

The district education department issued a notice in this regard today, warning such ‘illegal’ schools of a massive crackdown if they fail to abide by the directive.

Moreover, all private registered schools have been asked to furnish compliance reports on the mandatory filling up of 25 per cent seats with below poverty line students under the Right To Education Act (RTE) within a week.

According to district education superintendent Jayant Mishra, many unrecognised private schools are running in the city, ignoring a couple of strictures issued in December last year. A rough estimate by the department puts the number of such cradles at 35-40.

“This time it should be treated as a final warning, after which the state authorities will consider them as illegal and impose a penalty and imprisonment, as applicable under the RTE Act,” he said.

Mishra added that the department would not entertain any application for the affiliation after the deadline.

The move, he added, was aimed at ensuring implementation of RTE provisions wherein every school had to reserve 25 per cent seats for BPL kids, have proper classrooms and other facilities.

Only 57 schools have registered themselves with the department under the act so far.

But many schools, which aren’t set up by government or deemed authorities, are running unabated.

As education is everyone’s right, the state is willing to give them the recognition, which is a must to ensure monitoring and quality.

“We have uploaded all the necessary forms needed for the formality on our website www.dseranchi.com. One can easily download the forms from the website, fill them up and submit them to the state Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) office in Doranda,” said Mishra, who also happens to be the district nodal officer of SSA.

Notably, activists have been very critical of the state for its poor show in implementation of the RTE Act ever since it was passed in 2010.

Reports about private schools — both recognised and unrecognised —violating the RTE norms have been coming to fore.

Many schools allegedly fake the figures to show compliance of 25 percent quota, or over charge the remaining 75 percent students to make up for the ‘losses’.

Mishra said this was the reason why all schools had been asked to furnish details of their BPL students in a week time.

“It is to assess the schools’ claims and also to maintain government records,” he said.